As the name suggests, people that are longsighted generally cope better with long distance vision than near vision. However, being long-sighted doesn’t mean your long distance vision will always be clear and near vision always blurry, this will depend on the amount of hyperopia and your age.
Hyperopia results when light focuses beyond the retina at the back of the eye. The most likely causes are the length of the eye being too short, and generally in children when there exists a delay in the focus system stamina being developed.
About 25% of Australians are Hyperopic. It is normal for a child to have a low level of longsightedness up to the end of the primary school years.
The symptoms for low and moderate amounts of hyperopia are blurred or strained vision at near, however hyperopia is sometimes confused for presbyopia (age related near vision loss). Higher degrees of hyperopia will cause vision to blur in all viewing areas.
The eyes near focusing mechanism (accommodation) may neutralise the blurring affects of hyperopia in younger aged people. For this reason, hyperopia is commonly not detected during routine vision screenings at schools etc. A comprehensive eye examination by an optometrist will detect hyperopia, and more specifically the Behavioural Optometrist will fully assess age appropriate focus stamina and near binocular vision levels that can be affected by the longsightedness.
Hyperopia is commonly corrected by wearing glasses fitted with convex or plus lenses or by wearing contact lenses.